Reviews

Heiress Without a Cause, by Sara Ramsey

gamz's review

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3.0

3 Stars

I wanted a historical romance and found this as a freebie on iTunes. I'm usually unimpressed by freebies, but this one was pretty good.

It tells the story of Lady Madeline Vaillant, a spinster, who has decided to have a little adventure by disguising herself as a widowed French actress to star in a production of Hamlet. If caught, Madeline would be disgraced and shunned by the Ton. Madeline meets Ferguson Avenel, the Duke of Rothwell. Ferguson has recently returned to London after being banished by his father, the late Duke. He has only returned to see that his young twin sisters are debuted and find good marriages for them. At his aunt's suggestion, he meets Madeline, known for her honorable life, to chaperone his sisters.

From the first meeting, there is a connection between them. Ferguson realizes that there is more to Maddie than most people sees and is intrigued. Then he learns of her acting career and finds himself protecting her from scandal. As they spend more time together, he develops feelings for Madeline, but she is resistant to his advances. Because of her parents abandonment, she does not trust easily. Their relationship develops into a physical one and still Madeline refuses Ferguson's offer of marriage. It isn't until she learns what he is willing to do and has done to assist her in hiding her acting, does she finally trust him and relent.

While I enjoyed this book and will probably read the rest of the series, I was a bit frustrated first, with Madeline's inability to see what was obviously in her face. Ferguson loved her and she just kept denying her feelings for him, even though they were obvious. I was also annoyed that a lot of questions I had about Madeline's parents, Ferguson's parents and his brothers were not answered. The story could have been much richer with a bit more back story. Even the letters that Ferguson found from his father were just brushed aside and not addressed. I wanted to know, dammit!! Finally and most importantly, the big scary villain turns out to be Ferguson's ex with a need for revenge. She really wasn't that scary. She just wanted him back and was holding out for him. Yes, jealously and anger could be vicious weapons to wild, but Caro was not that. She was a sad, sad woman with a chip on her shoulder. That was really anti-climatic.

All-in-all it was a good book and I liked it. I just felt it could have been much more and I hope that the rest of the series is better.

teapartyprincess's review against another edition

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emotional medium-paced

3.0

carton_manette_darnay's review

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2.0

Come find me at www.cartonmanettedarnay.wordpress.com for more bookish content!

Unsurprisingly, judging by the cover, this is a romance novel and it was perfectly fine. The plot follows Lady Madeline, who moonlights as an actress, and the recently returned Rake, Ferguson, Duke of somewhere. The romance was decent, but there wasn't enough drama, which is surprisingly in a plot that supposedly has plenty of secrets. Somehow I never really felt like there was any danger, or maybe that the stakes were never high enough, for me to worry about the couple. I like a heaping of angst with my romances, and this barely has a sprinkle, so it just wasn't quite my cup of tea. Still, worth a read if you're in the mood for an adult romance, and not too picky. 
 

bookw0rmz's review against another edition

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5.0

I stumble upon this book on Netgalley half-expecting it to be a book for teenagers, yet I decided to give it a try. I was wrong on so many levels, and in a very good way. I had never read Regency literature before, and as an introduction to the style, this book proved to be particularly good. In a day and a half, I finished the first two books of the series, and I am longing for the other two to be published.

I liked the fast-paced action, the improbable situation with which the plot really starts, the clever dialogues and the romance. It is well written, the characters give a very good insight into Victorian life without lacking personality. The Muses of Mayfair are indeed an interesting lot, and I loved discovering life in Victorian London.

The ingenuity of the plot keeps the reader enthralled and I found it extremely difficult to put the book down. With clever and unexpected situations arising all the time, carefully distilled romantic scenes, Heiress Without a Cause is a nice change from the usual bland romance found in so many books. The cleverness of the characters, their personality makes for an excellent read, and I am looking forward to reading more of the adventures of the Muses.

booksandyarniness's review against another edition

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4.0

I liked the aspect of three best friends, each of which is trying to pursue their passion for the arts in a time when women were not allowed to be much beyond decoration. Plot revolves around the main character's pursuit of her passion for acting, which is not considered proper for a female of her status, and must be undertaken in disguise. The romance between the main characters is believable. Liked it enough to pick up the next in the series.

elinwoods's review against another edition

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slow-paced
  • Diverse cast of characters? No

3.0

rebleejen's review against another edition

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2.0

Didn't quite do it for me.

radella_hardwick's review against another edition

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3.0

Pleasant enough fluff – if you can suspend your Austen-tinted preconceptions – apart from a couple of smut passages that don't advance the plot any

While the author did a great job of laying out the situational antagonism, the human antagonist could have used more depth or been dispensed with altogether.

I'm tempted to continue with the series because book 3 promises to be an intriguing character study, although I'd guessed at the relationship that forms the basis of book 4 before I was halfway through.

aimee70807's review against another edition

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4.0

As Regency romances go, this was a pretty good book. It was interesting to have an actress playing Hamlet (given that a few hundred years before, women of course wouldn't have even been allowed to play female roles). But I had a feeling the whole time that I wouldn't like the ending, and I didn't (for reasons I can't mention without spoilers).

olive2read's review against another edition

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2.0

Good potential but too many plot holes and beatific platitudes about love being enough to conquer all.